early risk study

Our Goal

The goal of the Early Risk Study is to understand the earliest signs of autism spectrum disorder and ADHD. Our study focuses on younger siblings of children with autism, younger siblings of children with ADHD, and children of parents with ADHD – all of whom are at elevated risk for these conditions -- as well as younger siblings of typically developing children. Infants and toddlers between the ages of 12-18 months are eligible for this study. We follow the development of these infants and toddlers multiple times from early in life through age 3, monitoring early attention skills, communication, motor activity, self-control, social skills, and play behaviors. We use a variety of methods including eye tracking, interactive tasks between the infant/toddler and an examiner, and parent interviews. At age 3, we make diagnostic determinations (autism, ADHD concerns, etc.). The ultimate goal of our study is to understand the links between autism and ADHD, and to determine which behaviors early in life differ vs. overlap between infants/toddlers who develop these conditions. We hope that this research will help to improve early identification of autism and ADHD, and that it might lead to treatments that can be applied across various groups of children with, or at risk for, a range of neurodevelopmental concerns.

Who Can Participate?

Babies between 12-18 months of age who have:
- An older sibling with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or
- An older sibling or parent with ADD/ADHD (any subtype) or
- A typically developing older sibling

What Does This Study Involve?

  • Several (3-4, depending on study enrollment age) visits to the MIND Institute between 12 and 36 months of age
  • Assessments including measures of early social, language, cognitive, self-regulation, attention, and motor development
  • Close monitoring of your baby’s development, with feedback from expert clinicians
  • $25 reimbursement for each visit plus $25 for completing questionnaires

If you have any questions or are interested in participating, please contact:
Cady Stanton
Early Risk Study
916-703-0429
cmstanton@ucdavis.edu